Katie Couric has shared that she is being treated for breast cancer after being diagnosed in June.
"Every two minutes, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States," she wrote on Instagram. "On June 21st, I became one of them. As we approach #BreastCancerAwarenessMonth, I wanted to share my personal story with you all and encourage you to get screened and understand that you may fall into a category of women who needs more than a mammogram."
Couric, 65, details in her essay how she reacted after learning on her eighth wedding anniversary in June that she had breast cancer.
"I felt sick and the room started to spin," she wrote. "I was in the middle of an open office, so I walked to a corner and spoke quietly, my mouth unable to keep up with the questions swirling in my head."
She wrote that she underwent surgery in July and began radiation treatments on Sept. 7.
Couric also described the "suspended animation feeling" of learning she had breast cancer after having endured the death of her first husband, Jay Monahan, from colon cancer at 42, as well as the deaths of her sister at 54 from pancreatic cancer and her mother-in-law from ovarian cancer. Her mother and father also had a history with cancer.
"My mood quickly shifted from disbelief to resignation," she wrote. "Given my family’s history of cancer, why would I be spared? My reaction went from 'Why me?' to 'Why not me?'"
She also recalled when she broke the news to her daughters, Ellie, 31, and Carrie, 26, about her illness.
"Finally, four days after I was diagnosed, I FaceTimed each of them," she wrote. "I tried to be as reassuring as Dr. Newman. Their faces froze in disbelief. Then shock. Then they began to cry. 'Don’t worry,' I told Carrie then Ellie, 'I’m going to be fine,' trying to convince myself as well as them.
"They’d already lost one parent. The idea of losing another was unfathomable."
Couric wrote that she has no history of breast cancer in her family, which led her to discover that 85% of the 264,000 U.S. women who are diagnosed with breast cancer every year have no family history of the illness.
Couric underwent a lumpectomy on July 14 at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. Her doctors said she was able to forego chemotherapy because the chances of her cancer returning are low, but she still needed radiation treatments.
"I was warned that I may be fatigued and my skin may turn a little pink," she wrote. "Yesterday was my final round. My left breast does look like I’ve been sunbathing topless, but other than that, I’ve felt fine."
Just like her first husband's death prompted her to be a spokesperson for getting colonoscopies to catch colon cancer early, her breast cancer journey has motivated her to urge other women to make sure to get their regular exams.
"Please get your annual mammogram," she wrote. "I was six months late this time. I shudder to think what might have happened if I had put it off longer. But just as importantly, please find out if you need additional screening."
This article was originally published on TODAY.com